Amanda Visconti has a new post on Literature Geek that asks readers, “Who holds the intellectual property (IP) rights to your digital dissertation?”
Taking her own work on the Infinite Ulysses project as an example, Visconti considers the many elements and sources of a typical digital humanities dissertation, noting:
I’d like to think that good faith keeps DH informational exchanges smooth and that IP agreements—especially for projects like dissertations—will never need to act as real shields. On the other hand, digital projects have an unfortunate history of not being correctly attributed; digital archives are consulted but not cited, or a digital object is used but the (unused) print version is cited. Good working relationships with funders or departments aren’t a shield against pressure for commercial gains from higher up in a university or organization, or different ideas about intellectual property when an organization shifts into new hands. Being clear on the IP status of the different pieces of your digital dissertation is good practice, even if it’s only an exercise to help you think about licensing future, larger projects.